The collision, between a Mazda Premacy car and Ford Transit van, took place near Junction 24a of the M1 at about 2am - causing the southbound carriageway to be closed off since.
An 87-year-old, who was driving the car, and a 27-year-old, who was a passenger in the van, were pronounced dead at the scene.
Highways England has announced that the road between junctions 24 and 25 was made unsafe by the accident and is currently being resurfaced.
A spokesman said: “Due to the nature of the incident, it has done quite extensive damage to the road.
“And there was a fuel spillage which got under the surface of the road, making it very unsafe for other drivers.”
About 25 metres of the road needs resurfacing across all three lanes and the hard shoulder.
The police investigation and vehicle recovery has been completed.
A force spokesman said the van driver was taken to Queen’s Medical Centre, where he remains in a stable condition.
Before the collision, police had received reports of a car travelling the wrong way along the southbound carriageway.
Emergency services closed off the southbound carriageway between junctions 25 and 24.
A spokesman for Nottinghamshire Police said: “Drivers are asked to avoid the area if possible. Thank you for your patience.”
Anybody with information about the incident, or saw either vehicle prior to the collision, should call Leicestershire Police on 101 quoting incident 23 of 12 October 2015.